The heart-warming story behind the tradition of public Christmas trees in Czechoslovakia

However, the story of Rudolf Těsnohlídek, the man behind the idea, is full of tragedy.

Christmas trees began appearing in the squares during the First Czechoslovak Republic and there is a touching Christmas story behind it. (Source: Sme)

Following the First World War, on December 22, 1919, Rudolf Těsnohlídek and two friends went to the woods near the settlement of Bílovce nad Svitavou. They had wanted to take a fir tree to an acquaintance from the city of Brno (then Czechoslovakia) but they found something completely different.

“It was beautiful outside. Lovely winter weather. The forest was white and quiet,” one of Těsnohlídek’s friends later recalled.

They were walking in a line, not speaking to each other, when they all of a sudden they stopped.

“A deer! It could not be anything else. A little deer was crying somewhere,” the friend went on. “We turned off the road and waded through the snow, following its sound.”

The rest of this article is premium content at Spectator.sk
Subscribe now for full access

I already have subscription - Sign in

Subscription provides you with:
  • Immediate access to all locked articles (premium content) on Spectator.sk
  • Special weekly news summary + an audio recording with a weekly news summary to listen to at your convenience (received on a weekly basis directly to your e-mail)
  • PDF version of the latest issue of our newspaper, The Slovak Spectator, emailed directly to you
  • Access to all premium content on Sme.sk and Korzar.sk